“…..and they lived happily ever after.”
Those words hung in the air as she shut the book. She nuzzled closer to the belly of Dragon, who had become her companion over the years.
“Oh Dragon, will I ever get my happily ever after?”
The Dragon wanted to embrace the girl that he had watch grow from a child to a beautiful, young lady. However, even if he was as gentle as possible, he was a dragon and he always worried about harming her.
He blew smoke images from his nose that use to entertain the girl. This time as the smoke curled into images of charcoal peonies, she started to cry.
“I feel so alone.”
This broke the Dragon’s heart. He rolled over to let her know to climb on his back. She knew what he wanted and did as he requested. His wings stretched wide as they began to soar through the evening sky. Before long they landed outside of a village and as the girl climbed down, Dragon bent his head low. This was his way of telling her goodbye.
She knew he was telling her to go be with people once more because the years of her childhood were gone and so their adventures must end. She kissed Dragon on his nose and whispered a promise to come see him once a week.
She turned to walk underneath the cherry blossoms and Dragon watched her go.
Time passed and their weekly meetings slowly faded to monthly quick moments. Finally, the Dragon could not recall the last time he saw her.
One late summer evening Dragon was sleeping. He could hear her voice calling out to him. At first he thought it was a dream until a sweet smell lingered in the air. He opened his eyes and there she was standing before him.
“Dragon, oh how I have missed you. I am sorry it has been so long since the last time I came to visit,” she hesitated before continuing on. “I…..I…..I have fallen in love and tomorrow I will be getting married. I wanted to let you know because I don’t think I can come up here and see you anymore.”
She could see the pain in Dragon’s eyes.
“Thank you Dragon for everything you have done for me. You came into my life when I lost both my parents. I remember so well the day you were a little koi who fought up the waterfall to turn into a Dragon just for me. You have never left my side.”
Dragon looked away.
“I found a man who loves me. I don’t know what else to do?”
Dragon wanted to tell her how much he loved her but instead turned his back on the girl. After all, he is a Dragon and she is a woman. She needed a man to love her and take care of her.
Dragon then walked away and didn’t look back.
The day of the wedding the girl slipped into her wedding gown. She kept smiling and pretending to be happy but her thoughts kept going back to Dragon. She dropped the veil over her face and started to walk to where her groom was waiting for her. She had no one to walk her down the aisle since her only friend was not a part of her life anymore.
Slowly she stepped on the falling blossoms and something shimmery caught her eye. She looked over and noticed a small pond. Her feet lead her to the water and she looked down and noticed all the koi swimming around. She carefully dipped her fingers in the water and noticed one koi swimming by himself.
She curled up next to the pond and started to cry. Before long, she fell asleep. In her dreams, her father approached her. She was a little girl again and he started to tell her a story about true love. He whispered to her about the red string that is tied on the pinky of every person in the world and you just need to follow it to find your true love.
She woke up and her heart was beating so fast.
She looked down at the hand where she wore her engagement ring and on her pinky was a thin, red thread glistening in the sunlight. She followed the thread as it curled, twirled and lead into the forest and away from where her wedding was to take place.
Day turned into night and she felt like she had been walking forever. She sat down trying to warm herself up from the night air. The same feelings she had as a small child when her parents died returned once more.
“Am I destined to be alone?”
The wind stirred and as she watched the thread drift up into the air. It was then she realized it was flying and the other end belonged to Dragon.
He landed next to her and his hurt disappeared as he saw her sitting alone. She ran up to him and placed her cheek upon his nose.
“Oh Dragon, I am so sorry. I was such a fool. All this time I had love in front of me and didn’t see it,” she whispered. She looked into his eyes, “I love you.”
As she said the three words the thread disappeared.
“I don’t care what you are or where we live. I just know we are meant to be together.”
She then kissed Dragon on the nose and the night sky lit up as red blossoms dropped from the sky. She lifted her hands to catch the blossoms. As her eyes looked back to Dragon, before her was a man.
Dragon felt different and looked down at his hands. They were human now. He glanced back up and saw his true love standing before him.
“Yes……that is me.”
He smiled and after so long was able to take the girl into his arms. He pulled her close as he whispered, “I love you too.”
Caught up in the moment she asked, “is this my happily ever after?”
“No,” he spoke, “this is our new beginning.”
Written for MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie
Friday’s theme was to write a fairy tale based on the red thread of fate.